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Report: Notre Dame-Michigan game could return in 2018

Michigan v Notre Dame

Michigan v Notre Dame

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The series that everyone wants could be back sooner than expected. There’s a report (or tweet) from Sports Illustrated’s Ryan Krasnoo that Michigan and Notre Dame are set to announce the return of their football rivalry, with a date set for 2018.

Here are the 140 characters that got everybody excited.

Both Brian Kelly and Jim Harbaugh have been on the record about wanted to get the game back on the schedule. So has Notre Dame’s athletic director Jack Swarbrick, who infamously delivered written notice to former Michigan AD Dave Brandon about the halting of the two schools’ rolling contract, a necessity at the time with Notre Dame’s ACC commitment.

Brandon’s handling of the situation—he claimed to be blindsided—led to some friction between the two athletic departments. But Brandon’s removal from the post, and the subsequent hiring of Warde Manuel, has certainly thawed any iciness.

The need for both programs to add high-profile opponents certainly doesn’t hurt, either. To fit the game into the schedule, Krasnoo reports that Michigan is cutting a game against Arkansas, reportedly willing to eat the $2 million cancellation fee.

There’s no word on the location of the match-up, nor the resumption of a series. Jack Swarbrick has talked publicly about the return of the Shamrock Series in 2018 and also of aspirations of playing an international game in the near future. A season opener against Michigan could be a perfect opportunity.